Nepal’s Parliament on Wednesday unanimously voted to pass a law that criminalises the isolation of a menstruating woman, which is an ancient Hindu practice. The law, which recommends a three-month jail sentence or fine of Rs 2,000 INR, or both, will come into force within a year, AFP reported.

The custom known as chhaupadi, is followed by several communities in Nepal, who consider menstruating women to be impure. “A woman during her menstruation or post-natal state should not kept in chhaupadi or treated with any kind of similar discrimination or untouchable and inhumane behaviour,” the new law states.

According to the custom, menstruating women are not allowed to touch food in the kitchen, religious icons, cattle and men. They are made to sleep in huts known as chhau goth during that period.